Book Review of
Everything Beautiful in Its Time
To the world, George and Barbara Bush were America’s powerful president and influential first lady. To Jenna Bush Hager, they were her beloved Gampy and Ganny, who taught her about respect, humility, kindness, and living a life of passion and meaning—timeless lessons that continue to guide her.
In Midland, Texas, Jenna’s maternal grandparents, Harold and Jenna Welch—Pa and Grammee—a home builder and homemaker, lived a quieter life outside the national spotlight. Yet their influence was no less indelible to their granddaughter. Throughout Jenna’s childhood and adolescence, the Welches taught her the name of every star in the sky, the way a dove uses her voice—teaching her to appreciate the beauty in the smallest things.
Now the mother of three young children, Jenna pays homage to her grandparents in this collection of heartwarming, intimate personal essays. Filled with love, laughter, and unforgettable stories, Everything Beautiful in Its Time captures the joyous and bittersweet nature of life itself. Jenna reflects on the single year in which she and her family lost Barbara and George H. W. Bush, and Jenna Welch. With the light, self-deprecating charm of the bestselling Sisters First—cowritten with her twin sister, Barbara—Jenna reveals how they navigated this difficult period with grace, faith, and nostalgic humor, uplifted by their grandparents’ sage advice and incomparable spirits.
In this moving book, Jenna remembers the past, cherishes the present, and prepares for the future—providing a wealth of anecdotes and lessons for her own children and all of us. Poignant and humorous, intimate and sincere, Everything Beautiful in Its Time is a warm and wonderful celebration of the enduring power of family and an exploration of the things that truly matter most.
I don’t always love books of essays, but I really enjoyed Everything Beautiful in Its Time by Jenna Bush Hager. I read Sister’s First a few years ago and really enjoyed it, so when Everything Beautiful in Its Time came out last year I knew that I wanted to read it.
I bought it shortly after it came out but didn’t get around to reading it until recently. I needed something a little different than the books I had been reading and decided to pick it up. I loved this book. It was such a sweet tribute to Jenna’s grandparents.
I found myself crying at some of the stories and laughing at others. I have heard others say that this book reminds them of their time with their grandparents. For me, it was the opposite, it had me kind of longing for grandparents like Jenna had.
I did not know either of my grandfathers. We didn’t spend much time around my mom’s mom and she died when I was still a kid. My dad’s mom was a good grandmother, but she lived out of state and we only saw her once a year at most. By the time she lived near us, her memory was failing, so it was hard to have a close relationship with her.
Everything Beautiful in Its Time made me thankful that my kids have grandparents they know and love. It also gave me a sweet reminder that someday I can be the type of grandparent I never had.
If you love sweet family stories or books about presidential families, I think you will enjoy this one.